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Smart Place Programme

Infrastructure-smart-place

Our Smart Place Programme will help our area become a UK exemplar by harnessing the power of co-operative delivery, developing innovative business models, through the provision of digital infrastructure connectivity and optimised use of data and analytics.

We will, with others, aim to create a series of applications and services that residents and businesses in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole can use to transform their lives.

We will exploit the full potential of digital technology to make BCP a genuinely smart city region, where we use digital data to plan, manage and deliver better services for our residents and businesses and where digital natives thrive.

Our programme adopts a ‘place-based’ approach, with greater collaboration between local people, communities and the private, public and voluntary sectors. Underpinning this approach is the ability to share information securely at major scale (‘big data’).

This is supported by highly-innovative digital technologies, including 5G networks, gigabit fibre, connected devices and machines (‘the Internet of Things’). These smart solutions are also being applied to a range of internal council services, helping to create efficiencies and savings.

A key aspect of the programme is to create an innovative, financially-sustainable, public/private business model, which aims to attract significant private investment (estimated at£150 million over five years) and to generate income that can be reinvested in community and council services. It seeks to engage local technology companies wherever possible to help deliver the smart solutions through the Smart Place Research and Development Consortium. UK and overseas companies are encouraged to establish a presence in the BCP area, and a number of companies already plan to locate within the region as a direct result of the programme.

The Smart Place programme launched with the Smart Place Pilot Project in the Lansdowne area, which was completed in March 2021. Further development will take place as part of the Boscombe Towns Fund project between 2021 and 2023. A full roll out of Smart Place capabilities across the BCP Council area is planned between 2022 and 2027, supported by private investment. We have already started our Smart Place journey with our innovative beach app. This pilot for national rollout enables visitors to check car parking and beach data for busy and quieter areas, and pinpoints essential on-the-ground services such as public toilets.